Panowski Play Graphic

Ghost Soldiers

May 9-11

Written & Directed by Keli Crawford-Truckey

The Playwriting Award was established in 1977 by the Forest Roberts Theatre at NMU. The award is designed to encourage and stimulate artistic growth among educational and professional playwrights. It provides students and faculty the unique opportunity to mount and produce original work on the university stage. Submissions will be accepted biennially and must adhere to the theme of that competition cycle. They will be blindly read and judged by members of a screening committee. The winning play will be featured in our North Coast Theatre Festival Season.

NMU and North Coast Theatre Festival are excited to announce this year's world-premiere play is titled Ghost Soldiers. The play is written by and will be directed by Keli Crawford-Truckey. Ghost Soldiers tells the story of the soldiers who were a part of the "Polar Bear Expedition" during World War I. The action jumps back and forth between brief vignettes between the 1930s, ’40s, ’50s, ’60s, '70s, and World War I (specifically 1918-1919).

Inspired by the Grandfather of Nmu professors Paul and Dan Truckey, as well as other Michiganders who entered WWI looking to find part of themselves through their service as soldiers. Ghost Soldiers is a play that follows 6 young men who hoped to join the US forces in Europe, only to find themselves face to face with the Bolsheviks in frozen Northern Russia - a story about self identity, self acceptance, warfare, and tyranny. How we construct ourselves in the reflections of our family and country's politics. More importantly, it is about what we say to the people we love, and what we don’t.



*** This production contains some adult language and themes such as war and gun violence, alcohol and tobacco use.***

Thursday, May 9th at 7:30pm - Opening Night Party

Friday, May 10th at 7:30pm

Saturday, May 11th at 7:30pm

Location: Panowski Black Box Theatre

Tickets are $20 for General Public, $15 for NMU Faculty/Staff, Seniors, and Military, $13 for Students, and $5 for NMU Students.


Cast List


Michael AhlstromGeneral LeRoy/Bolshevik Soldier A/British Officer C
Copeland DiverIron Mike
Liam FisherBritish Commander Newt/British Officer A/Bolshevik Soldier B
Maisie JamesAlice
Megan LeeFrancis
Asa NaigusCowboy
Dobbs NicholsMusky/British Officer B
Wyatt SchmittDalton
Quinn SkellyThe Professor/Sheriff
Cayden SmakaGreenbean


Creative Team


More details coming soon!

† Indicates membership in Alpha Psi Omega, the National Theatre Honor Society.

Additional Artistic Staff

More details coming soon!

† Indicates membership in Alpha Psi Omega, the National Theatre Honor Society.

Forest Roberts Theatre Professional Staff


ProducerBill Digneit
Artistic DirectorJill Grundstrom
Production ManagerDavid Pierce
Technical Director and Scene Shop SupervisorBraeden Ingersoll
Scenic/Paint SupervisorLex van Blommestein
Sound/Media SupervisorRyan Harvey
Costume Shop SupervisorEm Rossi
Lighting SupervisorDavid Pierce
Marketing/Box Office ManagerEmily Burbey



Forest Roberts Theatre Staff

Scene Shop Technicians


Cassie Bowler, Maggie Brew, Tyler Crowley, Isabella Fontaine, Laura Hinz, Emily Iszler, Bryson Krieger†, Henry Moore, Grace Terwilliger, Sam Wardisiani†
Electrics Crew LeadMarla Alden
Sound/Media Crew LeadRyan Harvey
Electrics/Sound TechniciansCarley Bishop, Cyrus Cohen, Meara Kronsperger, Dane Krusick, Rachel Martin, Brayden Smith
Costume Shop StaffGianna Bratke, Zephyrus Choberka, Rhiannyn McClauley, Suzanne Shahbazi, Charlotte Somerville, Elise Wilcox
Marketing/Box Office StaffTyler Crowley, Zoë Hajec, Keely-Shaye Hanson†, Bryson Krieger†, Kyra Skinner

† Indicates membership in Alpha Psi Omega, the National Theatre Honor Society.

Cast Bios

Coming soon!

Creative Team Bios

Coming soon!